ISIS Issuing Photo ID Cards in Syria's Raqa

ISIS issuing photo identity cards and a range of administrative documents to males in Syria's Raqa province, say activists.

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Ben Ariel, Canada,

ISIS flag
ISIS flag
Reuters

The Islamic State (ISIS) group is now issuing photo identity cards in Syria's Raqa province, but only to males, along with a range of administrative documents, a monitor and activists told AFP on Friday.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said ISIS had begun issuing "identity cards to those without proof of identity and boys over the age of 13 in Raqa province."

The Britain-based group published a photo it said was provided by civilian sources showing a laminated card printed with the black and white flag of the Islamic State.

It carries the photo of the holder, his name, date and place of birth and his parents' names, and is marked "Wilayat (district of) Raqa."

An activist with the anti-ISIS "Raqa is Being Slaughtered Silently" group confirmed that IS had begun issuing identity documents.

The group is requesting "that people who do not have identity papers register at the civil registry in the city as a first step towards getting an identity card," activist Mohamed Saleh told AFP via the Internet.

He said its fighters were already receiving the new ID cards, but that civilians were still being registered to receive theirs.

The ID cards were not available for women "because printing their photos is considered forbidden."

"People don't want the cards, but they don't have a choice," he told AFP.

Saleh said residents feared the cards would become compulsory for all those in the province, even if they already have other proof of identity.

"That's what happened with their driver's licenses and license plates...Now there are checkpoints where they make sure you have them," he said.

Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman said issuance of the ID cards follows the introduction of a range of other administrative paperwork, including marriage and birth certificates, drivers' licenses and car registrations.

Land and building registration documents and permits were also being issued, he added.

ISIS has seized large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq since 2013 and declared an Islamic "caliphate" in the land under its control.

The jihadists have carried out numerous atrocities in areas they control, ranging from public beheadings to enslavement and mass rape.

The group has been accused of torturing and murdering prisoners, among them children and teenagers, and forcing Druze men to convert to Islam or die.

In one case, ISIS members beheaded a person they said was a member of an Iraqi Shiite militia fighting for Assad, only to discover they had accidentally beheaded a fighter belonging to an allied rebel group.

In March, the group live-tweeted the amputation of a hand of a man charged with theft in the northern province of Aleppo.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)








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